This original book from Nosy Crow is based on a series of print 'toddler' board books published in 2011 and features adorable illustrations by Benji Davies. Children will love assisting Bizzy as he helps out on the farm. Interactivity and character dialogue is driven by the reader, including lots of variety and room for open-ended exploration. In order for this cute cub to complete his chores, readers will need to help him by feeding the pigs, herding sheep, collecting eggs, picking apples and much more.
Although this app is no fairy tale, it does have many things in common with Nosy Crow's other two book apps (Cinderella & The Three Little Pigs). It is polished and solidly made, including the same adorable child voice-actors. Anyone familiar with their other apps will notice a similar style of interactivity with hints, plus lots of great dialogue in the form of speech bubbles that vary with successive taps. There is even a scene where Bizzy is riding a horse that captures the same unique feeling of movement found in their earlier books.
The app has a nice array of settings, including links that leave the app that are nicely tucked away in the 'information' section accessible from the title page. There is no page guide, although it is a very short book and if stopped in the middle the reader does have the option to 'restart' or 'resume'. Text is in a nice sized, easy-to-read font, although it does not highlight along with the narration. Page turn is by simple arrows that appear grayed out until the reader has finished all the interactive elements for each scene. Tapping on these arrows re-activates them, though, allowing children to read & explore without having to complete every task.
Overall, this is a great app for the youngest readers, suitable even for toddlers. Older children, up to age 6, will likely enjoy this app too. My 5-year old was able to read most of it by himself and was deeply engaged by all the activities. Bizzy Bear is charming and beautifully made, but most of all, it is a lot of fun. Highly recommended.
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
Camilla Reid/Benji Davies
Nosy Crow Limited
6 - 10 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: Yes
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 2 - 6
Bizzy Bear arrives on the farm to help out. Farmer Joe gives Bizzy a pair of red work books to wear and then off he goes to do chores all day. First he brings a bucket of apples to feed the pigs and turns on the water so the dog can have a drink. Then Bizzy heads to the sheep pen, herding all the animals back inside.
Next, the cute cub takes the horse out for a ride, ending up near the duck pond for a little rest. At the chick coop, Bizzy gathers eggs, before driving the tractor back into the barn. When the day is done, the bus arrives to take the helpful bear back home.